The 3D printing industry makes use of a number of different materials and the list is growing every day. The net worth of the 3D printing industry is said to be a multi-billion dollar one and recently studies have revealed that it will grow even more because of the rapid technological developments!
In the year 2017, the 3D printing industry had a net worth of $6.8 billion while the amount just doubled over in the year 2018 where it stood at $12 billion. Since the industry is growing every single day and it is expanding at a rapid rate, we get to see the emergence of new 3D printing materials. It is wrong to assume that the 3D printing industry just constitutes of plastic. Even though it is a major material that is used in the industry there are other materials which have also gained prominence over the last few years.
The Prominent 3D Printing Materials
Metal has surely become quite popular in the recent years and the reason behind this is the fact that metal has a number of different potentials which plastic does not have. DMLS or Direct Metal Laser Sintering refers to a technique which has become quite popular in order to make prototypes of the finished products.
List Of The Popular 3D Printing Materials
When it comes to the popular 3D printing materials there are a number of them besides plastic and each year a new items gets added to the list!
1. Sintered Powdered Metal
This is used to print the sacrificial fixtures along with the injection moulds which help in the acceleration of the design process which include casting, lay-up and injection moulding.
Popular metals such as stainless steel, gold, silver, nickel, platinum, aluminium, titanium are all used as a printing material. These are actually printed directly since they are bonded with the metal dust. This process alone can replace the post processing and casting which eventually turns the metal into a finished product.
3. Carbon fibre
These have gained a lot of prominence in the past few years because of the strength and durability it shows which is similar to that of metal’s but is much lighter than metal and is way more cost-effective.
4. Graphene embedded in carbon nanotubes and plastic
Graphene being discovered in the 2D printing industry has also found its way into the 3D printing industry. Since it has great conductivity and strength it is being used in many technological applications.
Author’s Bio: The author is a blogger and has written several blogs about science and technology. She is keen to know about new things. Here she writes about the new world of 3D printing materials.